Agency Updates Review Of Mishandled Documents

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An internal review at the state Department of Social Services has confirmed a number of documents, some still in envelopes and some dating to 2009, were found either partly processed or unprocessed at the agency’s Hartford regional office, according to a memo from Commissioner Roderick Bremby.

The memo, dated Thursday, was sent to Mark Ojakian, chief of staff for Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.

Though the memo says the “disorganized condition of the documents required extensive work,” a designated review team from DSS found that most were applications and other forms that had been processed and completed.

Some had not been processed, however.

“The review team found a number of partially processed and unprocessed documents” among “a minority of documents that were still in envelopes and that appeared to be unprocessed,” the memo said.

Among documents not in envelopes, the team found “a number of unprocessed documents, including some from as early as 2009,” the memo said.

In addition, the memo said, the team found “several” completed voter registration cards that should have been sent to local registrars of voters and now will be forwarded to them.

Also amid the documents were “a number” of forms from clients asking for help with voter registration, the memo said. DSS is working with the secretary of the state’s office to find out if those clients are now registered and will offer help to those who have not, the memo said.

Exactly how many documents were either unprocessed or partly processed is still unclear. The review is continuing and is expected to be completed by late January.

The Associated Press reported in late November that an earlier memo from Commissioner Bremby said multiple boxes of unprocessed welfare and food stamp applications had been discovered at the Hartford office. AP said the documents included unprocessed applications for food stamps and financial assistance, and redetermination forms — documents recipients must file to remain eligible.

Thursday’s memo was an update of the DSS review.

Bremby said five people remained on administrative leave: the office’s former regional administrator, two operations managers, and two human resources officers. Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner Claudette Beaulieu is overseeing office operations in conjunction with agency Chief of Staff Astread Ferron-Poole.

The memo said the agency’s Quality Assurance Division so far has found no problems at the other 11 field offices “that would rise to the level of concern of the Hartford situation.”









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